News and media consultant

Politics and International Relations is opening doors for UN news and media consultant Janna Hamilton.

Janna Hamilton

Key facts

Career: News and media consultant
Programme: Postgraduate Diploma in Arts
Subject: Politics and International Relations

“I am completing my postgraduate studies part-time in Politics and International Relations, and it has already started to open doors for me.

“I am currently based in Kenya’s capital, Nairobi, working in the communications department of UN Environment, the leading global voice on the environment, whose global headquarters is based here. Despite my work experience in communications for international NGOs, such as Oxfam and Red Cross, without my postgraduate studies from the University of Auckland I simply would not have had a chance to work in the United Nations system.

“The opportunity has placed me at the heart of the politics of international institutions pushing hard for global agreements and commitments by governments to take action against climate change. Of particular interest for me is our work addressing the exploitation of the environment as a driver of conflict.

“Being based in East Africa also allows me to pursue my research interests in the rebuilding of Somalia’s government structure after 25 years of civil war, and the ongoing battle with its Al-Qaeda affiliated terrorist group Al Shabab.

“Studying for an Arts degree has been invaluable for advancing my career options. In particular, the research skills you learn gives a prospective employer the confidence that you are able to produce accurate, well researched bodies of work. Equally important is the broad perspective we learn about the power and politics driving the international system; my line of work is invariably international in nature and this greater understanding has been essential for contributing ideas.

“Politics and International Relations at the University of Auckland has a world-class reputation. The international job market is highly competitive, but being able to show a degree from New Zealand’s highest ranked university is a competitive advantage.

“The academic staff offer students a broad range of expertise, perspectives and experience. In particular, I appreciated that some of the teaching staff had worked previously in international institutions prior to their academic careers. This gives students a practical, balanced learning experience.”